CHATTOOGA COUNTY, Ga. - Gov. Brian Kemp and First Lady Marty Kemp spent Wednesday morning touring damaged areas in northwest Georgia hit the hardest floods over the weekend.
Most of Chattooga County is still without water, and some business owners say they don't know if they'll ever be able to reopen.
Long lines filled downtown Summerville as many are desperate for water. Many people in the small towns have come together, giving out water and setting up food distribution for those families struggling to get back on their feet.
Gov. Kemp and top state first responders toured the damaged caused by what he called a 500-year storm.
"We have been here and we are not going anywhere," said Gov. Kemp. "We are going to hang here while everyone needs us. We are still seeing a lot of water in the area and in the drainage ditches, but I don't think it gives you the full effect of what people are dealing with.
Most of the water has receded back into the rivers and creeks, allowing crews to fully assess the damage.
Volunteers handed out food and cases of water as the water for most of the county remains out. Schools closed as the flooding caused major damage to the water treatment plant.
GEMA officials are working around the clock. They say there is a large buildup of silt and debris and that they are in the process of cleaning that out.
Business owners like Heather and Nicolas Casey say they feel defeated.
"It really just hit me. I don't know how to recover from this financially," Heather Casey said.
They were supposed to be on vacation to celebrate their 10-year anniversary, but couldn’t get out because of the storm.
"The doors of our store opened up, and we just saw our merchandise float down the street, and we helplessly stood and watched," Nick Casey said.
The Casey’s say they lost nearly $200,000 s in merchandise.
Many residents say the flooding was just a matter of time
"If they don’t come clean the drain we will be back vacuuming the drain out this weekend," Nick Casey said. "They knew this was a problem,"